The Stories Behind The Top 20 Most Famous Car Logos
The four rings which make up the Audi logo represent the four companies that were part of the Auto-Union Consortium in 1932. They were DKW, Horch, Wanderer and Audi. After the war, the Audi name (which in Latin means “to hear”) disappeared, but in 1965 it reappeared, using the four rings as its logo. The name Audi is also the Latin version of Horch, which in German means also “to hear”.
The BMW medallion represents a propeller of a plane in motion, and the blue represents the sky. This is because BMW (Bayerische Motoren Werke – Factories engine of Bavaria) has built engines for the German military planes in World War II.
The symbol chosen by Andre Citroen for his cars comes from the auto industry, the first activity of the french manufacturer. Citroen started by producing tractors transmissions, the two up side down V representing the “teeth” of those wheels.
The prancing stallion held today by the Ferrari cars has been at the top of a famous logo of an Italian airplanes pilot from World War I, Francesco Baracca, died in a mission. His mother, Countess Paolina, convinced Enzo Ferrari to take on its racing cars the symbol of her son.
Harold Wills, a friend of Henry Ford, won lots of money by printing business cards, and when Henry was looking for a logo to mark his car in 1903, Wills was on the job. The type of letter from Ford logo is the same used by Wills on his business cards. The oval appeared in 1912, and the blue background in 1927, along with the launch of Model A.
The Lamborghini logo is easy to decipher: it is a reckless bull. Ferruccio Lamborghini loved bullfights. This is shown not only on the logo, but also in the name of Lamborghini models in time. Nearly all cars have held the names of famous bulls or the noble race of the bulls.
The letters at the top of the logo are the initials of the founder of Lotus, Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman. It is not known why Chapman chose the Lotus name for the company. The Green is the famous British Racing Green, worn by British racing cars, and the yellow background symbolizes the sunny days Chapman wanted for his company.
As in the case of Alfa Romeo, the Maserati logo represents the town of the mark. The trident is the traditional symbol of the city of Bologna, where Maserati cars were built before.
The Mazda logo was designed by Rei Yoshimara, the creator of a famous picture for corporations, the V representing a large pair of wings. For Mazda, the logo symbolizes “creativity, sense of mission, delicacy and flexibility characteristic of the mark”.
The star in three corners represents the Mercedes-Benz dominance on land, sea and air. The star appeared for the first time in 1909 on a Daimler. In 1926 the crown of laurel was added to mark the union with Benz.. The current logo star in a circle, was used for the first time in 1937.
The three diamonds (or three rhombus) of the Mitsubishi logo represent the propeller of a ship, recalling the first activity of the Nippon manufacturer.
The lion from the logo of Peugeot comes from the Belfort city emblem, the place where was built the first Peugeot model. The author of the Belfort city logo, Bartholdi, is the same with the sculptor who designed the Statue of Liberty in New York.
The Porsche logo is almost identical to that of Stuttgart city, built on a stallion farm – that explains the horse on the logo. The horns of deer and the red-black stripes came from the flag of Wurtemberg Kingdom (currently the Land Baden-Wurtemberg).
The Renault rhombus was in the beginning only a logo located on hood. Behind the rhombus was the horn, and since 1922 the center logo was cut to allow the sound to exit. It started with a circular shape and in 1924 became rhombus.
The feathered arrow mark on the Czech cars logo doesn’t have a specific meaning, besides the fact that suggests speed.
Subaru was the first Japanese brand that has used a name derived from the Japanese language. It refers to a group of six stars of Taurus constellation, and known in Japanese as “mutsuraboshi.” They are the Pleiades.
The Toyota logo contains three ellipses which represent the heart of the customer, the heart of the product and the heart of technological progress and limitless opportunities of the future. In Japanese, “Toyo” signifies abundance, and “ta” means rice. In some Asian cultures, the rice represents wealth.
The Volkswagen’s logo story is simple. It contains the letters V and W: “volks” means “people” and “wagen” means “car”.
Volvo means “I go” in Latin, and the circle with the arrow is a conventional sign for iron – the best known richness of Sweden. The circle represents a shield and the arrow is the arrow of Mars, another symbol for iron.